Wednesday, March 23, 2011
A few weeks ago, I told Future Husband a funny story from my childhood about an incident with an Albino during a school play. He said it was the funniest thing he'd ever heard. I immediately pictured what I would draw in MS Paint to accompany the story.

This is not that story.

It is, however, a funny (if not sad) story about my first day of Fourth Grade at a new school. My education has been a source of much frustration, as well as humor. I attended public school for three years; Kindergarten, First and Third. I skipped Second. During the spring of Third Grade I started working on my Fourth grade coursework while the kids that were a year older than me continued on their due course. My teacher (an amazing woman and educator named Mrs. Adams, whom I stayed in touch with for years) approached my parents, and recommended looking into private or charter schooling for me. We couldn't afford tuition on our own, so we went looking for scholarships and advanced charter schools. My Godmother got wind of my giant brain and offered to pay the tuition to send me to a private school, and that is how I ended up at Queen of Peace Catholic School for Fourth grade.

Now, to understand the social suicide I was about to commit, you have to go back a few months. Maybe a little further. Both of my parents are theater geeks. My mom was an actress, and later a director, and my dad is the gayest straight guy I know. Seriously, he loves musical theater. So as I child I was in plays and musical reviews quite frequently. Sometime before I became obsessed with Grease, but after my Peter Pan phase, I went through an Annie period. As a child, I had ridiculously straight, lifeless hair (oh, if I only knew then what puberty would bring) and hated it. After months of obsessively washing my hair with a 'Curly Formula' shampoo and seeing no results, I convinced my parents to let me get a perm. That was during the winter. By August, it had grown out. A lot.

Lori, circa 1994

The unfortunate result being my severe resemblance to an overfed poodle. Did I mention that I had started to gain that pre-puberty chub that girls get, right before boobs show up? Also, I'm Italian, so I've always been well fed. Having been somewhat popular at my old school, or at least, never picked on and never short of playmates, I was worried about the kids at my new school liking me, especially since you advanced every year with the same kids. So I would be with this same group of kids up until Eighth(!) grade. That also meant there were going to be kids in my class that had known each other since, *gasp* Kindergarten. That's like, half their lives. (Or so my brain told me.)

So after dinner Sunday night, my parents made me lay out my new school uniform, check my back pack against the list of required school supplies, and hop in the shower. Standing in the bathroom, staring in the mirror, I became highly concerned with what my new classmates would think of one particular feature.

The eight year old mind is a mystery.

In my infinite wisdom, I decided that the problem with my appearance was my unibrow. So I decided I would just borrow my dad's razor, and trim it down a little. Not in front of the mirror, mind you... but in the shower. Just using my fingertips to feel if they were even.

After my shower I dried off, changed into my pajamas and came back out into the living room to watch TV with my parents. For some reason, I didn't think to check my impromptu eyebrow grooming in the mirror. I sat down next to my dad, who promptly said, "Lori... what happened to your eyebrows?"

Afraid I would get in trouble for using a razor without permission (trying to shave my legs for Easter had resulted in a weekend's worth of grounding), I froze. I replied the only thing my academically super-powered but sense deprived brain could come up with. "What eyebrows?"

"Exactly," my dad said.

I caved a few moments later, and confessed that I had tried to 'trim' my unibrow in the shower, since I was starting a new school and was worried that someone might make fun of my big, Deigo eyebrow.

The next morning my mom woke me a few minutes early, so she could pencil on the rest of my eyebrows. Make up was against the school's uniform code, so to hide the drawn on brow, mom made me wear my glasses. The ones I had outgrown in Kindergarten.

Did I mention they were hot pink?

And that's how I started at my new school; 6 inches taller and one year younger than everyone, with missing eyebrows, glasses too small for my face, and a grown out perm.

Needless to say, Junior High was miserable.

Don't worry, I'll tell you the Albino story later.


Unknown said...

Hahahaha!! I'm surprised the outgrown glasses didn't give you a headache just by the nature of them being old and I'm sure the wrong prescription.

I'm surprised you didn't beg to cut your hair off short to get rid of the outgrown perm. Or take a whack at that as well.

Lori said...

Oh no, all of that happened.

By September I had what mom called 'Page Boy' cut.

When I was sorting through my stuff before moving out to Seattle last year, I found my fourth grade yearbook. I looked at it, and scanned the pictures, unable to find myself. Confused, I looked carefully row, by row, looking for the little girls in each row. Still couldn't find myself.

Finally, I HAD to look at the names next to the pictures, just to find me. I looked THAT MUCH like a little boy.

Unknown said...

Awwww. That is so hilarious, sad and adorable all at the same time. *LOL*

Jinxie G said...

*snort* OMG! I did NOT know this story. I'm dying over here at g-ma's house! LMFAO!

Unknown said...

Okay, it's been 4 weeks. WE MUST HEAR THE ALBINO STORY. Please? Pretty please with delicious topping of your choosing on top?

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During this course of study, you will come to learn much about the strange eating, sleeping and mating habits of the Instrospective Lori under stress. We will observe as she moves halfway across the country to start a life with her own Captain Wentworth, takes a year off of work to pursue a writing career, and incessantly references Jane Austen.
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